By Kadiri Abdulrahman
Abuja – Global internet entertainment service provider, Netflix, has announced its partnership with leading Nigerian media and entertainment outfit, EbonyLife TV, to create two original television series and several other branded films.
Netflix announced this in a statement released on Netflix official twitter handle on Friday.
Dorothy Ghettuba, Netflix’s Lead for Original Series in Africa, said the partnership with EbonyLife and its founder, Ms Mo Abudu, an acclaimed Nigerian producer, would grow the company’s investment in Nigerian content.
“Under this partnership, Mo Abudu, through her production company, EbonyLife, will create two Netflix Original series as well as multiple Netflix branded films and a series that have been licensed to the service.
“A series based on contemporary author, Lola Shoneyin’s best-selling debut novel, The Secret Lives of Baba Segi’s Wives, and a film adaptation of Death And The King’s Horseman, a play by Nobel laureate, Prof. Wole Soyinka.
“Mo Abudu is at the forefront of creative storytelling in African television.
“Her passion for creating high-quality, riveting multi-genre films and TV shows that capture the imagination while showcasing the diversity and richness of Nigerian culture is evident in her impressive body of work.
“We are thrilled about this first-of-its-kind partnership in Africa that will bring some of Nigeria – and Africa’s most iconic storytelling to screen. We look forward to supporting EbonyLife as it brings all these diverse Nigerian stories to the world,” she said.
Meanwhile, Mo Abudu said that the partnership with Netflix would be most rewarding to Nigerian and African creative sector.
“As a Nigerian storyteller, my biggest motivator has always been to tell authentic and untold stories that resonate with every person, regardless of where they are from in the world while showcasing our culture, heritage and creativity.
“This unprecedented partnership is testament to Netflix’s investment in African storytelling and we at EbonyLife are grateful and excited about the opportunity to work with Netflix to deliver unique and riveting stories from Nigeria over the next few years for Netflix audiences around the world,” she said.
According to Ben Amadasun, Netflix Director of Licensing and Co-productions for Africa, the film adaptation of Death And The King’s Horseman will be among the newly-licensed Netflix branded films.
“One of the films will premiere on the service in 2020.
“We believe that more people deserve to see their lives reflected on screen and for that to happen, we need to make sure there is a wide variety of content that caters to our members’ diverse tastes.
“Our members around the world have been enjoying some of the licensed titles from EbonyLife like The Wedding Party, Chief Daddy, Castle and Castle and Fifty.
“ I am excited to continue our licensing partnership with the addition of Netflix branded film titles that will grow the variety of quality Nigerian stories on our service,” he said.
News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports that EbonyLife is a leading Nigerian media group, dedicated to telling a full range of African stories to a global audience co-production deals with leading Hollywood studios.
The company has produced over 5,000 hours of original television shows and six feature films, which included, high grossing, box office hits like The Wedding Party and Chief Daddy.
Netflix is the world’s leading internet entertainment service with 183 million paid memberships in over 190 countries viewing television series, documentaries and feature films across a wide variety of genres and languages.